Posted by: allisongran | December 19, 2011

Illustrations of Stories

I’ve always been interested in the editing choice to include illustrations in books, particularly those deemed “young adult”, seemingly bridging the gap between children’s picture books and novels. And while looking at the images Tenniel provided for Alice in Wonderland, it made me think of what the most well known illustrated book there was today. And of course I came to Harry Potter. The books only include illustrations in the beginning of chapters, but they are very interesting from an influential aspect. While with Alice, the images were constant throughout the story, providing readers with an image to accompany the written story. With Harry Potter, on the other hand, the image is often obscure and a single object of apparent importance in the chapter, often leading readers to suspect or guess what will be coming up next.


These are some examples of the images from the Harry Potter series. They differ severely from the images shown in the Alice book focusing on one single characteristic and often the object is shown simply, and not really in the context of what is happening in the plot. I don’t really know whether or not this has anything to do with the age group the stories were directed at or any other factor, but I think it’s just interesting to look at the two different approaches to illustration.

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